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Names of Bangladeshis to be revealed to High Court: Minister Kamal

FE REPORT | Thursday, 9 December 2021


The Anti-Corruption Commission will submit to the High Court the list of those whose names appeared in the newly released Pandora Papers report, Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal said Wednesday regarding the suspects in money laundering.

"The 43 names that came at the first stage were submitted to the High Court and the newly appeared ones will also be submitted," he told newsmen after a virtual meeting of the cabinet committee on government purchases.

His attention was drawn regarding the appearance of names of 8 Bangladeshi citizens in a document of the Pandora Papers released on Monday night. These persons have allegedly siphoned money off the country and invested in various tax havens by violating the law of the land.

Asked whether he felt surprised over the appearance of names of a new group of tycoons on the list, Mr Kamal declined to comment.

"Now a case is ongoing at the high court against those whose names appeared earlier," he said, adding that making comment on this subjudice matter would not be logical for him at this stage.

"Any opinion of mine on this issue at this point may deter their (ACC) activities," he said.

Replying to a query on the country's achievement in 50 years of independence, the minister said everyone has praised Bangladesh for the successes attained.

"It took first 38 years for us to cross US$100-billion mark, but now the size of gross domestic product (GDP) has reached $411 billion," he said to quantify the progress in terms of the macroeconomic parameter.

"We are doing very well on all fronts of the macroeconomic indicators," said the finance minister.

Referring to the United Kingdom-based Centre for Economics and Business Research, he noted that the organisation in its latest publication said that by 2035 Bangladesh would reach 25th position in global economy and would be one of the top 20 economies by 2041.

The cabinet committee meeting, chaired by the finance minister, approved procurement of electricity from renewable energy-based five power plants to be set up in various parts of the country under efforts for clean-energy transition of the planet.

They are: 68-megawatt solar power plant of Bangladesh-China Renewable Energy Company Pvt Ltd in Sirajganj, Cyclect Energy Pte. Ltd., Singapore's 50MW solar power plant in Chuadanga district, Bangladesh-China Renewable Energy Company Pvt Ltd's 60MW solar power plant in Pabna, 3.0MW solar-battery-diesel hybrid power plant of Western Renewable Energy Pvt. Ltd in Monpura Island of Bhola district, and a 42.5MW waste-to-energy project of Canves Environmental Investment Company Ltd, China, in Gaziur district.

The meeting also approved procurement of 60,000 tonnes of Muriate of Potash (MOP) fertiliser from Canadian Commercial Corporation and another 30,000 tones of MOP fertilsier from JSC Foreign Economic Association "Prodintorg" of Russia.

Also endorsed are the purchase of 30,000 tonnes of bulk granular urea fertiliser from Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC), 30 tonnes of bagged granular urea fertilsier from Muntajat, Qatar, 30,000 tonnes of bulk granular urea fertilizer from Fertiglobe Distribution Limited, UAE, and 30,000 tonnes of phosphoric acid from local agents of two UAE-based producers.

Besides, procurement of 41,000 pieces of laptop computers from Walton Digi-Tech Industries and a similar number of speakers from Global Brand Private Limited for government primary schools was also given approval. The committee also approved procurement of 420 nos. of broad-gauge wagons from Hindusthan Engineering & Industries Ltd, India, and 508 meter-gauge wagons from CRRC Shandong Co Ltd, China.

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